• BLOG

    dear pastrami, you’re not gonna win this one. respectfully, Chef.

    Call me crazy, but I’m a sucker for a good challenge. When I write a new menu, I like to add at least one item that really challenges my culinary skill…and that of my team. I research, experiment and decide on a passion project. In the past few years, we have added quite a few items to our repertoire including: fresh mozzarella, fresh ricotta, paleo pizza dough, fresh pasta, perfectly smoked brisket and grain free tortillas. A few years ago, I began researching scratch made pastrami. The real stuff….not the crimson rubber band most people serve you. There is a reason they shave pastrami in a deli folks. It’s the…

  • BLOG

    new menu mayhem

    Twice a year I change the menu at my restaurant. Ideally, I’d like to change it with each season, but the work that goes into just two menu flips is overwhelming. I’m starting to really understand why folks take the easy road and just run the standard fare without evolving. Don’t get me wrong, yes, I do understand. For me, it’s just not good enough. When you are a passionate, creative chef, it’s hard to cook the same menu all year. Day in and day out. The ingredients no longer inspire you…. the produce doesn’t call out to you, “ play with me!” “mold me into something great” “I’m at…

  • BLOG

    lifestyle switcheroo

    i often wondered what it felt like to be in shape and live a healthy lifestyle historically different from mine as a chef.  I sporadically worked at it little by little, trying this or that, making new year’s resolutions right alongside everyone else. the final straw was one random day when I was driving to work in uncomfortably tight jeans, complete with miserable love handles.  I told myself that was it, and decided right then and there I was going to go all in. The plan was to give the whole gym rat, healthy *mini carrot eater lifestyle a real shot.  i know that sounds hokey, but it was perfect…

  • BLOG

    the cool kids

    One of the best tips I’ve learned is to surround yourself by people with passion.  you know, the real deal, good people who care…about something. you don’t even have to have appreciation for the “something” they are passionate about…choose them, no matter what.  Those people are the people you need to be your people. these are the true, cool kids in my eyes, and I’ve learned so much from all of them….   The allergen free baker/owner. This guy is a super cool kid.  he built his business based on hard work and standing behind a niche he thought worthwhile….way before it was a “thing”.  He is still “live” in…

  • BLOG

    Don’t Be Disappointed

    Every January I set goals for the New Year.  Often they have something to do with my aspired level of fitness or how I feel my diet is going.  This year I tried to push myself further out of my comfort zone, set goals that were scary, and as I say often, “suck it up buttercup”.  I wanted to spend more time giving back and reaching out to the industry that I love. I wanted to honor my craft with the attention it deserves and maybe inspire a few people along the way. First…a reality check.  What does this mean, Angie? Do you have time for something else? Does anyone…